The aircraft that carried former President Bill Clinton to North Korea last month on an errand of mercy seeking the release of two imprisoned U.S. journalists wasn’t a government jet. The secretive mission–which the White House describes as a private diplomatic initiative–instead traveled to Pyongyang in a BBJ, the use of which was donated by owner Stephen Bing, head of Shangri-La Entertainment and a personal friend of the ex-President.
Federal Aviation Regulations
The FAA has issued a Notice of New Task Assignment for the Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ARAC) to develop maintenance requirements for aircraft used in commercial air-tour operations as covered in 14 CFR Part 136–Commercial Air Tours and National Parks Air Tour Management.
Cessna has received Organizational Delegation Authority (ODA) status from the FAA. The designation means the Wichita-based airframer can act on the FAA’s behalf to examine aircraft designs, production quality and airworthiness and affirm that all the aircraft it builds meet current federal aviation regulations.
With today’s dedication of the country’s first major September 11 memorial at the Pentagon, Americans are recalling the events of that fateful day when airliners were turned into weapons of mass destruction. Although general aviation had nothing to do with the tragic events of 9/11, many of the security measures instituted in the aftermath of the attacks that affect GA operations remain in effect.
With the end-of-summer political conventions set for Minneapolis and Denver, the FAA transferred the general aviation security program designed for access to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) to the Minneapolis-St. Paul area to provide top cover for the Republican gathering.
An FAA team explored whether there is a safety and compliance issue with aftermarket repairs and replacement parts made under applicable FAA regulations but without the blessing of the type and production certificate holders, meaning original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
Pilots are urged to check notams carefully when operating in airspace affected by Presidential temporary flight restrictions, including the temporary closure of airports, because each one is tailored to unique conditions and circumstances due to the “unpredictable nature of the current security environment,” according to FAA Administrator Marion Blakey.
The FAA last month issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FAA-2007-29281) to remove wording in Parts 91, 125 and 135 that currently allows pilots to take off with frost on wings, stabilizers and flight controls “if the frost has been polished to make it smooth.” The polished frost rules are found in 14 CFR 91.527(a), 125.221(a) and 135.227(a).
Now, after being somewhat dormant on the subject for a number of years, the Federal Aviation Administration has expressed concern about airline pilot duty days, which according to the Federal Aviation Regulations allow for a 16-hr duty day with no more than eight hours flying time.
General aviation continues to make some, albeit slow, progress towards regaining at least limited access to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) with the announcement by a top Transportation Security Administration (TSA) official that the agency hoped to publish the required security procedures this month.